Max out your exercise regimen

Ty Valkanas

Thu December 5, 2013 4:10pm

When it comes to working out, slow and steady does NOT win the race. Maximize your time and your effort! Instead of working out for an hour at an easy-to-moderate intensity level, step it up a notch. Challenge yourself to 30 minutes of nonstop, intense exercise. You can take 15 to 30 second breaks, but move quickly from one exercise to the next. Give it 100 percent for 30 minutes, instead of 75 percent for an hour. You will see much better results in your training. Need ideas for shorter, high intensity workouts? Check out www.The90DayFitnessChallenge.comI’m not a fan of the elliptical. Not only is it the most boring piece of equipment in the gym, it is also extremely ineffective. The elliptical doesn’t use a natural body motion to work your body. Workouts that use natural motions like running, bending, or jumping are much more effective at toning muscles. Sure, the gliding motion of the elliptical burns calories, but that’s about it. You are much better off doing a 20-minute callisthenic and resistance training circuit (burpees, jumping rope, squats, etc.) than 45 minutes of slogging along on the elliptical. If you are looking for another low impact exercise, try the rowing machine! This will get your heart rate up, and also work the muscles in your upper body and back while keeping the impact very low.
When you do the same workout routine over and over, your body gets used to it and it becomes easier. The Stairmaster might have been challenging at one point, but pretty soon your muscles become familiar with that motion. Your body only uses half the energy to complete this task that at one point had you huffing and puffing your way to seeing some results. Mix it up. By changing your workouts daily you will trick your body into working harder and burning more calories. It will also save you from boredom and hitting that training plateau! Cardio burns calories and an hour on the treadmill gives you that instant satisfaction of burning 400 calories… Or so that little blinking screen says… But a quick strength training session, however, will get your heart rate up and ultimately burn more calories, AND develop your lean muscle mass. Building muscle means that those muscles are able to work throughout the day burning more calories when you aren’t working out. This will make you leaner and develop the shape you really want from your fitness program. You know that girl at the gym who’s always fixing her hair in the mirror? Don’t be that girl. Or that guy hogging the bench press or leg press machine for an hour or two every time you see him in the gym? Come to the gym with a time frame and a plan to work hard! This means no wandering around, no texting your boyfriend in between sets, etc. Come with a set workout to complete, limiting your water breaks to specific short rest points in your routine. If this means writing down your regimen, make it happen! Make the most of your time. Eat right, train hard and expect results!